Ntshangase has seemingly slotted in like a hand to a glove in the Amakhosi midfield, being able to finally showcase what he initially promised upon his arrival at Naturena - his trademark ‘champagne passes’.
Stiga: Billiat is helping Ntshangase
The 25-year-old has not had the easiest of transitions since his move from Baroka in January, being used mostly as an impact player late on in games under Steve Komphela last season.
However, he has since come to life under new mentor Giovanni Solinas, who has given him the nod alongside midfield enforcer Willard Katsande in George Maluleka’s absence so far this season.
Saturday’s MTN8 quarterfinal victory over Free State Stars saw Ntshangase inpsire the Glamour Boys to a 3-0 victory, and Fredericks believes the difference in the former Black Leopards attacker’s rise is the presence of Billiat, who has taken some of the weight of expectation off his shoulders.
“Chiefs needed a breath of fresh air and, with all the expectation now on Billiat, Ntshangase has benefited because he has less pressure on himself,” Fredericks tells KickOff.com.
“The fact that Maluleka is not fit at the moment has obviously worked in his favour and given him an opportunity to showcase his ability right at the start of the season.
“The team wasn’t good against Bidvest Wits last week, but I thought he was decent in that game. With that bit of game-time though, he then got better on Saturday against Free State Stars.
“He’s showing to be the type of player we all expected when he first came to Chiefs, although I don’t want to heap praise just yet because he still needs consistency in his performances.
“If he continues to put in the type of efforts we’ve seen recently, he’ll make a massive impact. His role is now the one next to Katsande, so he needs to be the link between the team regaining possession and going forward.
“That’s what [Keagan] Buchanan was expected to have done for Chiefs from that deeper position, and it’s what 'Vila' [Sibusiso Vilakazi] is doing for Sundowns, coming from deep to start the attack.
“Ntshangase had roving guys in front of him on the weekend – the likes of [Joseph] Molangoane, Billiat and [Dumisani] Zuma. Even when Maluleka returns [from an ankle injury], he can still fit in in the middle and give Billiat room on the right and Zuma on the left.”